Woman outraged by doctor’s refusal to see obese patients

Posted at 5:34 PM, Aug 26, 2012
and last updated 2012-08-26 17:34:21-04

SHREWSBURY, Mass (FOX4). — A woman is outraged after a doctor refused to treat her because of her weight.

The doctor feels obese patients have no place in her office. Dr. Helen Carter says she doesn’t treat patients over 200 pounds.

Ida Davidson admits that she is a little overweight. On the second visit to her primary care doctor in Massachusetts, she was told that they didn’t want her as a patient because of her weight.

“She was telling me that she couldn’t care for me because I was over 200 pounds,” Davidson said. “I mean, I’ve never heard anything like that, I thought doctors were there to help you.”

It doesn’t happen that often, but it’s not illegal. In fact the country’s major physician group says it’s also ethical.

The American Medical Association says patients and doctors can “exercise freedom in choosing with whom to enter into a patient physician relationship.”

Dr. Carter says she began screening out the overweight patients in the spring after several of her staff were injured.

“There are alternatives there’s an obesity center at UMASS better staffed and has more resources than I do,” Dr. Helen Carter said.

Davidson said the doctor’s office didn’t care about her health that day. She feels they just cared that she was a liability and maybe too much work.